A Saudi cabinet decision came out this Tuesday permitting stores and restaurants to operate all day in exchange for paying a fee determined by the kingdom’s municipal and rural affairs ministry.
“This is positive news that I expect will increase consumption and create jobs,” said Mazen Al-Sudairi, the head of research at Al-Rajhi Capital in Riyadh. “Fast-food restaurants, cafes and cinemas will be the primary beneficiaries.”
For decades, stores and restaurants in Saudi Arabia have been closing during prayer time and ending their daily operating hours at midnight. The shocking decision left many wondering if the stores will be operating during prayer times after applying the new law.
However, Khalid Al-Degaither, a deputy at the ministry implementing the change, stated that the decision doesn’t include operating during prayers.